Multifamily Florida - Summer 2020 - 10

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*	 Affordable housing tax incentives. FAA advocated for language to be added to HB 1339 or SB
998 that would have allowed counties to establish
a property tax discount program for affordable
housing units. FAA's tax incentive language was
added to a proposed amendment for SB 998 on
February 14 but was later stripped from the bill
because of tax revenue concerns.
-	 Although FAA's language was removed from the
bill, HB 1339 was ultimately passed by both the
House and Senate. Signed by the governor on
June 10, this new law will enable local governments to approve the development of affordable
housing on any parcel of land that is zoned for
residential, commercial, or industrial use. The law
would also impose additional impact fee reporting
requirements on local governments and establish
biannual affordable housing workshops, among
other positive changes.
-	 FAA also worked to address industry concerns
related to linkage fees in HB 1339. Linkage fees
may be flat or percentage-based and are used by
local governments to fund affordable housing
development. Language was added to HB 1339
to clarify that a county or municipality which
imposes a linkage fee must provide incentives
to fully offset all fee costs to the developer of a
residential or mixed-used residential development. Incentives may include allowing density
or intensity bonuses, reducing or waiving fees, or
others. This requirement was modeled after FAA's
priority legislation from the 2019 session, HB
7103. This bill was signed into law last year and
requires local governments to provide incentives
to fully offset the developer's costs for affordable
housing construction under an inclusionary
zoning policy.
*	 Fire radio system requirements (SB 1404).
Under current statute, local governments have the
authority to determine the minimum strength of
fire department radios in existing and new buildings
within their jurisdictions. Apartment community
developers and operators are required to install
equipment that will boost the signal if needed for
firefighters to communicate effectively in the event
of an emergency. Because the authority rests with
local governments, the processes and requirements
vary across the state, causing challenges for some
developers and operators. Under current law, existing apartment buildings are not required to comply
with local signal strength requirements until January
1, 2025. However, apartment buildings are required
to apply for the appropriate permit for the required
communications installation by December 31, 2022.

-	 Sen. Lauren Book (D-32) introduced an
amendment to SB 1404 to remove the language
in state law that requires apartment communities
to obtain a permit to install this fire radio signal
equipment by December 31, 2022. Instead, the
amendment called for apartment communities
to have completed a minimum radio strength
assessment by that date. Unfortunately, SB 1404
was indefinitely postponed and therefore did not
advance to the floor during the 2020 session.

FAA Successfully Opposes
Harmful Legislation
Over the course of the 2020 session, several pieces
of legislation were introduced that could've wreaked
havoc on the apartment industry and its bottom line.
Here is just a small list of the bills that FAA successfully
opposed this year.
*	 HB 6013 (Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-47) would
have removed Florida's rent control preemption
and allowed local governments to pass rent control measures. This bill died without a committee
hearing and will have to be reintroduced next
session to receive further consideration.
*	 SB 1852 (Sen. Jose Rodriguez, D-37) included
numerous requirements such as a mandate to
notify tenants before the sale of a rental property,
protections for victims of domestic violence,
requirement of just cause for evictions, and more.
This bill died without a committee hearing and
will have to be reintroduced next session to
receive further consideration.
*	 HB 321 (Rep. Michael Grieco, D-113)/SB 480
(Sen. Jason Pizzo, D-38) would have prevented
evictions during a state of emergency. HB 321
cleared one committee as amended. The revised
language limited evictions during hurricane
watches/warnings and added a mandatory fiveday hold on a writ of possession. HB 321 died in
committee and will have to be reintroduced next
session to receive further consideration.
*	 SB 1528 (Sen. Victor Torres, D-15)/HB 6069
(Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-47) would have removed
the requirement for a resident to pay rent into a
registry of the court under certain circumstances.
This bill died without a committee hearing and
will have to be reintroduced next session to receive
further consideration.

Other Notable Legislative Changes
Although it was a very successful year overall for
FAA, one bill passed that was strongly opposed by the
apartment industry. SB 374 (Sen. Darryl Rouson D-19)
removes the requirement to exhaust administrative



Multifamily Florida - Summer 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Multifamily Florida - Summer 2020

Multifamily Florida - Summer 2020 - Cover1
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https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/FAA/FAA_winter2020
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